Are you missing money? Uncashed checks, inactive bank accounts and undelivered bonds are returned to the state for safe keeping. But getting your money back is easier than you might think. 415 Group Partner Kathleen Krohn, CPA, explains how to search for unclaimed funds.
Say you’re due a tax refund or an overpayment from your doctor’s office, but you recently changed your address. If a company can’t deliver a check to you, it becomes an unclaimed property, and by law the company must turn it over to the state after so many years.
It’s a little hard to prevent these unclaimed funds from happening. But it’s easy to find them. Everyone should check each year — particularly when they move or change their last name.
Last year, I found $12,000 in unclaimed funds for one of my clients. Money that she didn’t know anything about. It’s definitely worth a search. You never know what you might find out there. It takes very little time and doesn’t cost anything to do.
Visit the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Unclaimed Funds website, and enter your personal name or company name into the database. If you find your name, follow the instructions to prove your identity, and you’ll get a check.
You do want to be aware of scams. Sometimes people will receive emails claiming to be looking out for their best interest. The emails ask for payment upfront to retrieve your funds. You never want to follow through with those things. This is a free service offered by the state.
If you’re well-versed in the Internet, you can do this yourself. But if you have any questions or concerns, give your advisor at 415 Group a call. We can help you search for any unclaimed funds that you may be owed.
According to Credit Karma, over $40 BILLION of unclaimed property is currently being held by state governments. That's a staggering amount of money — enough to buy half of the National Football League franchises. Not included in that figure is property sitting with federal agencies and other organizations. So what exactly is unclaimed property and how do you find out if you have any? Here is what you need to know:
What is considered unclaimed property?
There are two main types of unclaimed property:
(1) IOUs. Money that is owed to you that you haven't claimed.
(2) Forgotten funds. Money sitting untouched in an account for an extended amount of time.
Specific types of unclaimed property include back wages, life insurance, pensions, tax refunds, bank accounts, money orders, gift certificates and security deposits. For example, many states require banks to turn over funds from checking accounts that have been dormant for over three years.
Tips for managing unclaimed property
As always, should you have any questions or concerns regarding your tax situation please feel free to call.